There are a few major conversations couples should have before walking down the aisle and committing to marriage, but perhaps the most important discussion of all is finances.
As per the report “Money is basically one of the main reasons why couples fight,” and ultimately leading to Divorce.
It’s important to know what you’re getting yourself into. The thing is a lot of people these days come into a marriage with debt and that causes a lot of issues because your expectations may be that your partner will help you, but without having a very honest conversation about it, you’re entering the marriage with the wrong expectations.
And if couples neglect to have this conversation before their big day, then that only leads to financial and relationship uncertainty and more arguing in the future.
Money becomes a major source of stress and conflict later on and is one of the major reasons people get divorced.
You have to talk about it from the beginning – even if there are no issues – or have healthy money habits. You have to be proactive about it.
These are the five money talks you should have with your significant other:
1.Their history with money
Find out how they have dealt with money their whole life and what they like to spend their money on. “What’s important to them? What do they value?”
Another thing to consider is if your partner is a saver or spender and if it matches up with your money beliefs. If they don’t, then some type of common ground will have to be reached with how the money is handled in the future.
2.What kind of debt do they have and how do they the plan to pay it off
It’s important to figure out if you’re going to pay this on your own, or if you’re [going to pay it] as a couple. “Also some couples keep their finances together, others keep them separate, so you need to know how you’re going to handle your finances – is it your money for yourself, or will you be putting everything together?”
3.Overall savings and retirement planning
The amount you save is directly affected by the long-range plan you should develop together. Unfortunately, too many couples fail to agree on and/or execute the right strategy, as nearly one-third of couples regret not putting more money into savings and investments, according to American Express research.
Setting a budget doesn’t automatically translate to “no more fun.” You still can buy things. You’re simply creating a realistic plan to afford your lifestyle while regularly setting aside a specific amount for the future.
Online retirement-savings calculators like the one in our new Retirement Center can help you set a target within a given time frame and determine how much you need to sock away to achieve that number.
Every couple should know how much debt each partner is carrying. That means checking out each other’s credit report. “Then you’ll know all about your partner’s credit history, which is especially key if you plan to get married,” Gallegos says. “You’ll also have the opportunity to review and correct any errors in them.”
It’s also critical to agree on how credit card bills are paid, to ensure that purchases don’t exceed what you can afford.
Couples can come into a relationship with very different ideas about what a vacation is, and much of this is driven by what kinds of vacations we enjoyed (or missed out on) as children. For some, nothing less than a glamorous cruise, an exotic island adventure or a luxury trip to Europe will do. Others are happy just chillin’ out at the nearest beach or lakeside rental. Then there are those who prefer to enjoy their own backyard with a “staycation.”
Open communication and agreed-upon expectations regarding vacations are crucial. If you do have opposing ideas about what a vacation is, you can alternate every year. Switch off on who designs the vacation, but always agree to a spending ceiling beforehand—and stick to it.